Mike Pratt, long-time UK basketball radio analyst & fmr. Wildcat, has died
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Mike Pratt, the long-time UK basketball radio analyst and former Wildcat, died Thursday night due to complications from cancer.. ESPN Radio host Bob Valvano confirmed the news on Twitter. Pratt was 73.
The Dayton native came to Lexington in the fall of 1966 after being recruited by Joe B. Hall and would later be named a 2nd team Converse All-American, a two-time 1st team All-SEC performer and helped lead the Wildcats to three SEC championships (1968-70).
As a UK player, Pratt scored 1,358 points, pulled down 718 rebounds and had 32 double-doubles in 81 career games.
Pratt spent two years with the ABA Kentucky Colonels before getting into the coaching ranks with Lee Rose at UNC-Charlotte. As an assistant with the 49ers in 1977, Charlotte advanced to the Final Four.
When Rose, a former coach at Transy coach departed for Purdue after the 1978 season, Pratt became the UNCC head coach. Pratt guided the Niners for four seasons before leaving the sidelines for the broadcast booth.
Pratt was a TV basketball analyst working for ESPN, Fox Sports, as well as the Charlotte Hornets TV Network.
In 2001, Pratt joined “The Voice of the Wildcats” Tom Leach as color analyst for the UK Network, where he helped paint the picture through the 2022-2023 season.
“Mike was just the perfect guy to be sitting in that chair,” said Leach. “He was so good at the job. He was knowledgeable, honest, and fair.”
Jim Host, founder of Host Communications and a stalwart in sports marketing and broadcasting, praised the team of Leach and Pratt.
“The best! The best!” said Host. “You cannot have a great broadcast, especially a radio broadcast, without having terrific chemistry.”
In 2009, Pratt was inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame and a year later into the Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame.
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